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Sam plays down chances

13 April 2007 07:41
Sam Allardyce believes Bolton Wanderers have blown their chances of Champions League football for next season despite being only two points behind Arsenal in the final qualifying spot. The Trotters boss claims his side passed up the opportunity to win a place in Europe's premier club competition during a run of poor away results around the turn of the year. Bolton face the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday and could leapfrog Arsene Wenger's side if they win, but having played a game more, Allardyce has rubbished suggestions from some of his own players that a top-four finish could be on the cards. "I've no desire to call for a Champions League spot whatsoever," he said. "I don't know why the players are talking about it because when we did that last time we all blew it. "We had a terrific opportunity at the end of December to draw and win the odd extra game than we did, yet we fell apart. "We lost to Liverpool, Middlesbrough, Tottenham and Manchester United - all away from home. "We appeared more like a relegation-threatened side than a potential Champions League side. "We've since got it back together again now and let's just be happy about that. "We're still in fifth spot, and we have been for some time, so let's be confident about trying to keep that position. "Anything after that, let's wait and see, but Champions League football is not on my expectation list, and neither should it be on theirs."

Source: ESA